Gourmet Veggie Mama

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Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Sweet Chili Sauce

You know what’s good? Brussels sprouts. I know, I know — they’re all the rage right now, but I have to say, I’m so glad they’ve been re-discovered and that people are actually doing them right!

Roasting is the way to go, hands-down. You’re not still cutting those little Xs in the bottom of your Brussels sprouts and boiling them are you? Roasting is so much easier, and so much tastier, too.

The hubby and I went out to dinner at Uchiko a little while ago, and, among the many dishes they wowed us with was a side of crispy roasted Brussels sprouts with sweet chili sauce. Since I love Brussels sprouts for Thanksgiving and wanted to include them in our feast, I decided to try my hand at a similar recipe. Although ours didn’t come out as crispy (or, truth be told, as greasy*) as Uchiko’s, they were still awesome.

Roasted Brussels Spouts with Sweet Chili Sauce

* Not necessarily saying that’s a bad thing — they were utterly delicious.

I love the combination of soy sauce and sweet chili sauce on these, for a slightly Asian spin that was still perfectly at home with more traditional Thanksgiving foods. We had the rest of the sprouts (recipe testing, round 2) with a dinner of caramelized tofu with ramen noodles a couple nights ago, and it went great with that, too. Definitely a must-try!

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Sweet Chili Sauce
Cuisine: Asian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4-6
  • 1 lb Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
  • 2 Tbs canola oil
  • 2 Tbs tamari or soy sauce
  • 2 Tbs sweet chili sauce**
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 and lightly oil a rimmed baking sheet.
  2. Toss the Brussels sprouts in a bowl with the oil and soy sauce to coat them, and then spread them in a single layer on the baking sheet. Roast for 10 minutes, or until partially tender.
  3. Toss the sprouts and then raise the oven temperature to 400. Continue to roast for an additional 10-15 minutes, or until tender, crisp and browed, tossing every few minutes to ensure even browning.
  4. Remove the Brussels sprouts from the oven and toss in a bowl with the sweet chili sauce. Serve immediately.
** Available at Asian groceries or the Asian foods section of some grocery stores.


Leftover Extravaganza

“Tis the season. You know, the season of lots and lots of leftovers. Do you have them? At this point, they are just hanging out in the fridge, begging to be used ASAP or tossed. Here are a few tasty ideas that will hopefully help keep you from feeding a post-feast feast to your compost pile.

  • Sweet potato waffles. We added a nice hefty scoop of leftover sweet potato casserole (topping and all) to our favorite waffle batter.
    sweet potato waffles

    Breakfast time!

    Not only were they excellent,  the leftover waffles freeze well so that you have quick breakfast for mornings to come!

  • Bon Appétit’s Thanksgiving leftovers slideshow has a bunch of excellent-sounding recipes, including pumpkin flan (a great use for that partial can of pumpkin you have in the fridge).
  • Brussels sprouts pizza. Yeah, seriously. We had this for dinner the other night and it was so good. We already had some leftover grilled pizza crusts in the freezer, so it was quick and easy to throw together (the hubby finished them off on the grill).
    brussels sprouts pizza

    Eat your veggies!

    My vegetarian version included halved roasted Brussels sprouts, mozzarella and manchego cheeses, sautéed spinach and a sprinkle of fleur de sel and crushed red pepper. The hubby’s version included Brussels sprouts, bacon and mozzarella. Both were delicious (or at least so I hear).

  • Cranberry brie bites. I stumbled across these on Rufus’ Guide to Food and Spirits, and I must have them now. What an awesome use of leftover cranberry sauce (which is plentiful in my fridge right now).
  • Mashed potato cakes. Obvs. I wrote about this one yesterday, and it was tasty.
  • Stuffing stuffed mushrooms? Yes please!
  • Last but not least, here are a bunch of ideas for all that leftover turkey from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe and A is for Austin.

Thanksgiving: Part I

I’ll separate this into two posts, since Thanksgiving, as the Super Bowl of the foodie world, deserves more attention. I’ll talk sides first.

As a vegetarian, Thanksgiving is mostly about side dishes and dessert for me. If I’m hosting, I’ll usually make a veggie main course along with the turkey. A couple of years ago, I made an acorn squash stuffed with quinoa, wild mushrooms, and smoked mozzarella, and it was awesome. This year we went to our friends’ house for dinner, though, so I just brought ample sides to share. Don’t worry, I still walked away stuffed!

First, I made some simple roasted brussels sprouts. There’s really nothing quite like fresh brussels sprouts. If you hated them as a kid, give fresh ones a try! I just halve them (quarter any bigger ones) toss them with olive oil, salt and pepper, and then roast them in a 400 oven for 45 minutes to an hour, until they’re nice and brown on the edges. Perfecto! So much easier than boiling or steaming them, too, since you don’t have to cut a million little “x”s in the stems. Also, the flavor is much better. Sometimes I’ll sauté them with a little butter and some chestnuts or toasted hazelnuts to finish them off, but I was short on time, so I just went rustic, and they were still great.

I also made a chipotle sweet potato gratin based on this recipe. It’s a dish I have tried a ton of variations on, and I can never seem to get it quite right. I think it’s great in theory, but in practice it usually turns out too soupy, or too greasy, or too spicy, or not spicy enough. It’s always something. Although I like the non-traditional-twist-on-a-traditional-side-dish thing it has going, I think I’ll revert to my mom’s sweet potatoes with honey and pecans next year and save myself the trouble.

The hubby contributed deviled eggs and sausage balls (both veggie and non-veggie) to the feast, so we had something to munch on before the real meal got underway. His tofu sausage balls are a surprisingly good substitute for the meaty ones my grandmother used to make.*

* Yep, it’s my family recipe, but the better half latched on to it and has pretty much made it his own. It’s basically Bisquick, sausage, cheddar cheese, and chopped jalapenos, mixed, formed into balls and then baked.

My favorite new recipe of the year, though, was the cranberry sauce. Cranberry sauce is so delightfully easy to make, and it even gets better if it sits in the fridge for a day, why would you ever go with the canned stuff? I’ve experimented with a few different kinds of cranberry sauce, but I think this one is a keeper.


It’s nicely spiced, has a hint of orange, but not too much, and is sweet but not cloying. Perfect! Nora loved it (although we did limit how much she had, since it is pretty sugar-y), and she also loved to wipe her icky hands on my sweater as she ate. So, any good ideas for getting cranberry stains out??

Spiced Cranberry Sauce
Based on this recipe from Gourmet

12-ounce bag of cranberries, rinsed and picked over
1/2 cup honey
3 to 4 Tbsp firmly packed brown sugar, or to taste
two 3-inch cinnamon sticks
6 whole cloves
1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
3/4 cup water

In a saucepan combine the cranberries, the honey, the brown sugar, the cinnamon sticks, the cloves, the nutmeg, and the water and simmer the mixture, covered, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 10 minutes, or until the cranberries have burst and the mixture is thickened. Transfer the sauce to a bowl and let it cool. The sauce may be made 2 days in advance and kept covered and chilled. Serve at room temperature.

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